Experts praise region for location, labour supply and transport links

Commercial property experts have outlined the benefits of having a business in Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire.

Steve Manifold and Jon-Ryan Gill, of commercial property consultancy Knights Frank, praised the region for its location, its transport links and its skilled labour supply at the Make IT Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire event last week.

The event took place at the World of Wedgwood, in Barlaston on Tuesday and was staged as part of the Staffordshire Business Festival.

Mr Manifold, associate at Knight Frank's Manchester office, said: “We see Staffordshire as a key market, sitting strategically between both the West Midlands and the North West regions.

“It is located within 50 miles of 20 per cent of the UK population, that's 13 million people.

“It has key transport links and three international airports within an hour's drive.

“Another critical advantage of Staffordshire is that it has plenty of skilled labour and there's a great supply of employment land."

Mr Gill, partner at Knight Frank, believes that Staffordshire's ability to retain and attract global businesses is helping to grow the region as a whole.

He said: “Staffordshire's real strengths are its exceptional transport links, its skilled labour supply and employment land supply.

"It is home to some world-class business including JCB, Steelite International and GE, all of which are growing and will continue to grow in the region. It also boasts a number of enterprise zones, has strong links with local authorities and lower rates."

Mr Gill explained how rental values across Staffordshire are generally 20 per cent lower than anywhere else in the Midlands at £5.25 per square foot – compared to £6.50 per square foot elsewhere.

He added: “Some of Staffordshire's recent successes include the Trentham Lakes site which has recently seen the expansion of Screwfix and Amazon has taken up the vacant Big Stan unit.

“Redhill Business Park, in Stafford, will also see two new units occupied by GE, which is expanding."


Sophie Attwood